In view of advance arrival of Paddy in the State Mandis, the Punjab Government has ordered to start procurement from September 27, 2020 instead of the earlier announced program. Instructions have also been issued to lift the procured crop within 48-hours.Divulging details, the Food & Civil Supplies Minister Bharat Bhushan Ashu said that the State Government was receiving information regarding arrival of paddy crop in Mandis thus the State had decided to start procurement from September 27, in full pace, instead of October 1, 2020 as announced earlier. The Minister said that Punjab Government was committed to lift every single grain of the farmers produce.
Bharat Bhushan Ashu said that as many as 4035 places had been notified as procurement centres across the state in order to protect the farmers, labourers, Arthiyas and those involved in procurement, lifting and transpiration from COVID-19 pandemic in these trying circumstances. Out of total 4035 procurement centres, the Minister said, 1871 were Government Mandis while 2164 were public places and premises of mills, which had been notified as procurement centres to keep the spread of Corona at bay.
Ashu pointed out that the Central Government had announced the MSP of Rs 1888 for the A-grade paddy. He also informed that the State Government had made elaborate arrangements as ensured at the time of wheat procurement so that health protocols especially social distancing could be followed meticulously amid Coronavirus. All concerned authorities involved in the procurement process have been directed to strictly follow the health protocols besides ensuring availability of soap for washing hands, availability of water and sanitisers having 70 percent alcohol at the procurement centres.
The Minister further stated that the procurement operations would continue till November 30. He said that the Punjab Mandi Board would issue passes to farmers through Arthiyas as given at the time of Rabi crop with different colour of passes everyday.
Ashu also informed that all requisite facilities for farmers and labourers would be provided at all procurement centres including availability of potable water, proper sitting place, public conveniences etc.